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Babysitter sentenced to 2 years

by Andrew Maciejewski - amaciejewski@h-ponline.com

The Huntington man arrested after a 3-year-old child he was babysitting suffered a clavicle fracture while being placed in timeout was sentenced to serve 2 years in prison, according to court records.

Mason Hunter Jewell, 21, pleaded guilty to a Level 5 felony charge of battery on a person less than 14 years old with bodily injury and was sentenced to four years, with two years suspended to be served on probation, according to Huntington County Circuit Court records.

Huntington County Prosecuting Attorney Amy Richison, who ran on a platform to protect children who are victims of crime, said she agreed with the court’s decision. 

“I am grateful that Mason Jewell was held accountable for physically abusing a defenseless three-year-old child,” Richison said. “Children in our community are a priority to my office and other agencies. We investigate child abuse cases as a multi-disciplinary team consisting of members from law enforcement, the Department of Child Services, McKenzie’s Hope, and the Prosecutor’s Office. We dedicate our joint time and resources to child abuse investigations because children are among the most vulnerable in our community, and they are worthy of our best efforts. I am passionate about protecting children, and I’m humbled that I am able to be a voice and advocate for abused children in our community.”

On Sept. 6, 2018, Parkview Huntington Hospital officials contacted the Indiana Department of Child Services for a “suspicious injury,” which occurred while Jewell was the primary caregiver, according to the probable cause affidavit.

Jewell reportedly became frustrated with the child after it wouldn’t stop running a toy across the television, according to police reports. Police say Jewell grabbed the child by the wrist to place him in timeout but the child pulled away, making Jewell even angrier. According to the affidavit, Jewell told police he grabbed the child on the shoulder and squeezed until he heard and felt a “pop.”

“Jewell did not provide ice, pain relievers or any medical intervention and (the child) was still made to sit in timeout,” according to the affidavit.

Police say Jewell lied about the cause of injury initially but later confessed that he used too much force and felt remorseful for his actions. Jewell said he didn’t provide medical treatment for the child because he was afraid he would go to jail, according to police reports.

Jewell has 144 days of jail credit, according to court records.